How Long Does It Take To Fall In Love?

Last Updated 21.04.2022
11 min read
Taimi

The truth is that the question of how long does it take to fall in love is one that has tormented many people over the years. When a new relationship starts, you might feel that familiar feeling of falling in love. You don't want to acknowledge it but this person makes you feel alive and safe and you love spending every moment with them.

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While all of these positive feelings start to develop, you keep thinking to yourself, "Am I actually in love?" If you can relate to this, then this is the perfect opportunity to dive deeper into this topic. Here are some important facts about falling in love and how romantic love can move faster or slower for some people.

There is No Competition When Falling in Love

The very first thing you should keep in mind when it comes to love is that falling for someone is not a competition. In other words, it doesn't matter how long it takes for you to develop feelings for someone.

That being said, the same should apply to the other person's feelings as well. Just because you fell for them quickly, doesn't mean that you should expect them to be as quick to fall in love with you too.

Falling in love can take time for some people. They might genuinely care about you and want to go on dates with you and spend time with you. Being understanding and giving each person enough time can be crucial to forming trust and love in your relationship.

What do Researchers Have to Say About This?

That being said, researchers always are willing to try and debunk such statements and help give people a different perspective on things. A 2011 study on commitment in romantic relationships from the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology had quite a few things to say about how this is communicated.

Based on the results of that study, men believe that confessing their love to a new partner can be considered normal as early as one month into the relationship. Along with that, men think about confessing their love at around 97 days, or about three months into a new relationship on average.

On the other hand, most women answered that expressing their love verbally into a new relationship should happen around six months into the relationship. Most women though, start thinking about confessing their love around 149 days into the relationship.

This is a great example of how, even though both parties might be considering, each person will act differently. There are situations where you will want to wait up to those six months to confess your love. In other cases, you are ready to say "I Love You" within just a few weeks.

Just because research shows a more collective way of how people think, it doesn't mean that all people wait or that men fall faster than women. There is no one answer to this and factors such as instant attraction and emotional attachment can strongly affect the rate at which someone falls in love.

Is Love at First Sight Real?

"There can be a strong attraction at first sight, but romantic love for someone requires knowing who they are, the fullness of their character." Lauren Fogel Mersy, Sex Therapist, PsyD

A lot of people feel like falling in love, at first sight, is similar to romantic love but in reality, there are a few differences between the two. The first thing science has to say about this is that it is probably not love, but rather physical attraction at first sight.

In order to call these emotions love, the average person will have to spend some time with a partner, get to know at least a few things about them before they know they're in love.

The things that make you feel in love, at first sight, are an attraction to someone's appearance and characteristics that have nothing to do with their personality or emotional availability.

For example, you might find certain women physically attractive and this can create a lot of excitement which can on average can be similar to falling for someone, but it is not always the same.

From all of these women you are attracted to, one a few, if not only one will be the one which will intrigue you with her character and charm. Therefore, you might be attracted to a lot of people due to their physical characteristics, but this is very different than actually falling for them

How Trauma From Past Relationships Can Affect Finding Love

One thing that truly can impact the way someone falls in love is trauma and bad experiences they have faced with previous partners. When someone had opened their heart to an ex abusive partner, the situation they had to get out of can cause them to be cautious with new partners.

While these people might feel in love and happy, they might not feel comfortable with showing that they are in love, in fear of getting their hearts broken again. This is something that can truly degrade their mental health and make them scared to love.

This is especially when being patient and helping them feel safe without pressuring them into anything. Actions speak louder than words and there are many different things you can do to help them feel comfortable to express themselves.

Is it True That You Can't Hurry Love?

Over the years, you might have seen a lot of different things claiming to help you make someone fall in love with you faster. These are aimless ads and campaigns which pray on hopeless romantics and people in love with someone who is either not interested or emotionally unavailable.

This idea started becoming a trend around 1997 when a study from psychologist Arthur Aron claimed to have found the shortcut to love. That being said, the study only spoke about closeness and not a single time was love mentioned anywhere.

Following that, there have been many other studies and psychologists who have claimed to offer a way to make others fall in love faster. A very popular trend that is still around to this day is the 36 questions to fall in love faster, which claim to help fall in love with anyone.

In other words, there is no shortcut that will make someone fall in love with you faster but you can always play around with quizzes and fun questionnaires. At the very least, they can help you get to know the other person better and lead to some fun moments together.

Sometimes love happens fast and other times it takes its time. The point is to enjoy every moment with the people you choose to allow into your life and love will find you eventually.

Shelley Sommerfeldt a relationship coach, and Clinical Psychologist has to say the following about why people want to know how quickly one falls in love:

"They may want to compare their feelings, reactions, and experiences with others to ensure they are on a typical progression"

That being said, it shows that most people don't actually want to find a way to rush love faster. It is just a normal human reaction to want to know if we're doing everything at a normal pace.

How to Tell if You're in Love With Someone

Knowing whether you truly are in love with someone can be rather tricky to decipher. People fall in love, some call it love at first sight and others fall in love slower, basing their feelings on a more experienced and slow kind of love. Whether you have started a new relationship or this is your first love, you might want to know what to expect when falling in love with someone new.

  • Feeling like you're full of energy and happiness

Falling in love with someone new might help you feel like you are "on top of the world". This is caused by the hormones oxytocin and vasopressin, which are responsible for making you fall in love faster.

  • You are having a hard time focusing on your everyday tasks

If you feel like you can't stop thinking and even dreaming about this new person, it might be a good sign you're in love. This is something that happens to almost everyone and can help you feel like you truly cannot get any work done.

  • You want to spend all your time with them

Another very common sign that you are in love with someone is that you want to spend as much time with that other person as possible. Most of the time, it doesn't even matter if you just lay in bed together and stare at the ceiling. Just being around them makes you happy and content.

  • You are starting to get emotionally attached

It is very important for every couple to talk and find things they both love quickly into the relationship. Apart from these things and physical intimacy, emotional intimacy is also a very important factor that can help make the bond between you stronger.

  • You actually feel safe with them

You know for sure you have fallen in love when you finally open up to that special someone about personal experiences and things that define you, that you don't usually share with anyone else. Feeling safe with them and trusting them through being this vulnerable is a true indicator of love.

Differentiate Between Love and Excitement or Lust

Now that you have a better understanding of what falling in love feels like, you also need to remember something important. Falling in love with someone can be truly accelerated when there is physical attraction and intimacy between the two partners.

When you are romantically interested in someone and you also have sex in this relationship, it is much easier to catch feelings, and this is probably why most friends with benefits situations don't work out.

Love can be split up between certain different aspects and different people view every stage in a separate way. A Harvard survey found a lot of answers for these from a chemical perspective, so let's see a few more things about them:

  • Lust

This feeling can be associated with the beginning stages of a relationship, where there is a lot of passionate love taking place between the couple.

The simple answer to this is that hormones such as testosterone and estrogen are responsible for creating this feeling that enhances the physical attraction between partners and leads to most people having sex with their new partners.

Both of these hormones play a role in increasing libido in relationships while estrogen production is more effective in women around the time they ovulate.

  • Attraction

The second point, attraction, can be tied or independent to lust. While sometimes it can happen that there is lust for people we are attracted to, it is not always necessary.

Neurologically speaking, the attraction has to do with the brain pathways which are connected to one's "reward behavior". They better explain the process of developing feelings for a partner the first few months without this necessarily being tied to sex.

At this stage of relationships, your brain secretes dopamine and norepinephrine, the hormones that are responsible for causing that high you might feel when you fall in love. This is all part of the process of dating and developing feelings for someone and seeing them as more than friends.

  • Attachment

Finally, attachment revolves around the hormones vasopressin and oxytocin, which can stimulate the creation of a deepened bond. You can oftentimes see such bonds forming betwen women and their children or between friends.

The same applies to couples who have been together for some time. While there is no definitive amount that can say how long it will take for attachment to form, or whether this happens faster for women or men, it certainly won't happen on a first date.

This is more of a slow burn situation that dismisses any average gender stereotype and shows how people form feelings for someone which last for a long time and bring them closer and closer together.

Taking Your Time With Learning the Other Person

Last but not least, one of the most important things you should take away from this is that while falling for someone faster might sweep most people off their feet, you should still take the time to get to know the other person better.

There is a big difference between a relationship that is based on excitement and one based on true, genuine love between two partners. Knowing the other person, their personality, the way they deal with everyday things, and other important details about their lives is truly important.

In fact, being open and vulnerable like that can be a great way to create an attachment between two people, and help them form a lasting love that will be able to overcome every difficulty.

This is often what keeps married couples together and generally takes an average time of a few months to a few years to fully know your partner and fall for their personality instead of their looks.

At the end of the day, their personality is what will keep you in love with your partner, as looks will become a secondary thing over the years and dating will turn into experienced love and attachment to your partner.

Finding True Love Might Take Time- and That's Okay!

If you have gone through a few relationships which didn't turn out to be what you imagined, you might be eager to finally settle down and find the love of your life. Everyone is looking for love and you should not settle for anyone who doesn't treat you like the most important person in their life.

Whether it took you a minute or a few months to fall in love, be honest and true about your feelings and emotions. Don't listen to what anyone else has to say. If you feel like your love is strong and can last, how fast you fell in love won't matter at all in the years to come.


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